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Operational aspects of DCMI Work structure: Communities and Task Groups

Creator: Makx Dekkers
Date Issued: 2006-12-18
Replaces: Not Applicable
Is Replaced By: Not Applicable
Latest version:
Status of document: This is a DCMI Process Document.
Description of document: This document outlines the structure of work in the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative [DCMI]. It describes the details of the organizational structure and the decision making process.

Purpose and background

This document defines the structural elements of the work done in the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative, specifically concerning the operation of DCMI Communities and DCMI Task Groups. Operational aspects of other groups working within DCMI are the DCMI Usage Board Administrative Processes and charter and operation of the DCMI Advisory Board.

Communities and Task Groups

DCMI Community and DCMI Architecture Forum DCMI Task Group
Goal Exchange of information, general discussion within a specific area of interest. Work on concrete task with defined deliverables.
Establishment Anyone can propose to establish Community. Proposal needs to identify area of interest with relevance to DCMI participants and to name moderator(s). Proposal is reviewed by the DCMI Advisory Board. DCMI Directorate formally installs the Community. Anyone can propose to establish Task Group. Proposal needs to identify the task to be performed, and needs to include a short justification of the task, a work plan with deliverables and target delivery dates, the proposed Task Group leader and members. Proposal is reviewed by the DCMI Advisory Board. DCMI Directorate formally installs the Task Group.
Deactivation Review by the DCMI Advisory Board at the annual meeting. At completion of the task.
Announcements DCMI Directorate publishes news item on the DCMI Web site. Moderator(s) announce on DC-GENERAL, and, in case of deactivation, the Community's mailing list. DCMI Directorate publishes news item on the DCMI Web site. Task Group leader announces on DC-GENERAL, and all relevant mailing lists (Communities, Task Group).
Chair Moderators oversee discussion, may identify need for establishing Task Group for specific activities. Moderators are members of the DCMI Advisory Board. Task Group leader acts as project manager and is member of the DCMI Advisory Board.
Membership Anyone can participate by subscribing to the open mailing list. Anyone can ask for membership. Task Group leader considers request and decides. Rejection needs to be motivated by the Task Group leader and can be appealed with the DCMI Directorate.
Charter General charter of the form: "The DCMI <xxx> Community is a forum for individuals and organizations involved in implementing Dublin Core in the <xxx> domain, with the objective to establish representation of the domain in DCMI and to promote interoperability within the domain through the use of Dublin Core metadata". Specific description of the task.
Workplan None. Deliverables, target delivery dates and assignment of activities to named persons.
Infrastructure Community page on DCMI Web page<community-name>. Mailing list DC-<community-name>@JISCMAIL.AC.UK. A Community can also have a Wiki at<community-name>wiki. Wiki at<task-group-name>wiki, or use Community wiki. Mailing list DC-<task-group-name>@JISCMAIL.AC.UK, or use Community mailing list.
Documentation Temporary documents at Wiki (if available), at JISCMAIL file area associated with the mailing list, or at external location. Final documents (e.g. meeting agenda and reports, slide shows, other resources) to be published on DCMI Web site, either in Community Web directory or in Documents under development in Wiki. Final documents to be published in
Links Community Web page to point to other related DCMI Communities, Task Groups of relevance, external resources of interest. Task Group Wiki to point to relevant DCMI Communities and DCMI home page.
Reports DCMI Directorate includes list of subjects discussed on mailing list and membership in external DCMI Status Reports. Moderator provides information on Wiki activities. Task Group leader to report at least once every two months to relevant Communities and DCMI Directorate on progress and further planning.

Initiation of a new Dublin Core work item

A proposal for a new DCMI work item may originate from:

  1. the DCMI Directorate; or
  2. the DCMI Architecture Forum; or
  3. a DCMI Community; or
  4. anyone who participates in DCMI's general mailing list DC-GENERAL.

In the first case, a work item proposal is developed and documented by the Directorate. In the other cases, a work item proposal is developed, documented and submitted by a proposer to the Directorate. In all cases, the DCMI Directorate consults with the DCMI Advisory Board. The proposer must be willing to participate in any Task Group dealing with the work item.

The DCMI Directorate may either:

  1. approve the work item and refer it to an existing Task Group for action;
  2. approve the work item and establish a new Task Group to carry it out;
  3. decide to take no further action; or
  4. defer any action until a specified date.

This decision should be documented and communicated to the proposer. In the case of the third and fourth courses of action, reasons should be given why no immediate action is taken.

Community Web page

The DCMI Web site includes a page for every DCMI Community detailing:

  • the moderator(s) of the Community;
  • the charter (objective) of the Community;
  • any news and announcements concerning the work of the Community, including announcements and reports of meetings;
  • links to the Community's Wiki (if it exists) and any relevant Task Groups;
  • a link to the e-mail archive of the Community's mailing list;
  • historical background of the work of the Community; and
  • references to any relevant resources and background material.

Links to all DCMI Communities are listed on the DCMI Web site on the overview page of all active and deactivated groups within the Dublin Core Metadata Initiative.

DCMI Wikis

DCMI Task Groups can have Wikis to support their activities. The front page of the Wikis includes information on:

  • the leader(s) of the Task Group;
  • the charter (objective) of the Task Group;
  • the workplan and members of the Task Group;
  • links to workitems under consideration;
  • links to relevant DCMI Communities; and
  • any other links and references to relevant materials

Links to all DCMI Wikis are listed on the DCMI Web site on the overview page of all currently active mailing lists and Wikis.

DCMI document policy

During development, documents may be located in different places on the DCMI Web site, the DCMI Wiki areas, and at external locations. The table below lists the types, styles and responsibilities associated with these documents related to their location.

Location Document types Document style Responsibility
DCMI Web site, including group pages HTML, PDF, RSS, RDF (Web pages, official documents, reports, presentations) DCMI headers and footers DCMI Directorate
DCMI Wikis Any (work in progress) DCMI Wiki template To be determined
JISCMAIL mailing lists Mail messages, attachments None JISCMAIL
JISCMAIL file areas and surveys Any (work in progress) Any style (not DCMI-branded) JISCMAIL
External sites Any (work in progress) Any style (not DCMI-branded) Local host, author

The responsibility for the maintenance and archiving of Wiki documents is currently under discussion in a committee of the DCMI Advisory Board.

See for a description of all documents under responsibility of DCMI the DCMI Publication Policy.

DCMI Approval process

When proposals are submitted with changes or additions to DCMI Metadata Termsor when documents are proposed for the status of DCMI Recommendation, they are processed according to the formal Procedure for approval of DCMI Metadata Terms and Recommendations.